Exclusive: Internal documents detail VA police altercation with veteran who later died
Dec. 14, 2018
Kansas City Star reporter Andy Marso confirmed the veteran who died was Dale Farhner of Kingston, Missouri. But the VA refused to say what happened, so the reporter filed a records request under the Freedom of Information Act.
WASHINGTON – A 66-year-old veteran was found severely injured and nearly unconscious following a traffic stop by a Veterans Affairs police officer in May, and he died two days later, according to an internal report obtained by USA TODAY.
The VA has repeatedly refused, even seven months later, to disclose any details about what happened, citing an ongoing investigation.
But the internal report provides an account of a tragic altercation between the veteran and officer outside the VA medical center in Kansas City, Missouri. “After being pulled over, the patient began making inappropriate gestures and physically threatening motions with his arm,” the report says.
The officer also noticed a “large ‘bulge’” by the driver’s abdomen “(later found to be due to recent hernia surgery).” He decided to detain him. The man “struggled.” So the officer “brought the patient to the ground.” He then completed the “handcuffing process.”
During the incident, the patient’s son approached “from behind.” The officer directed him to stay back, and he called for backup.
But something was awry.
“While being brought to the ground, the patient seemed to suffer some injuries,” the report says. So he was taken inside the hospital to be checked out.
“Upon arrival to the Emergency Department the patient was non-verbal, moaning with a decreased level of consciousness,” the report says.
Medical workers found he had a gash in his scalp and “multiple” cuts and bruises on his face. A CT scan of his head showed areas of bleeding around his brain, one on the left frontal lobe and another on the right.
read more here